UK Startup Launches Crypto Insurance, 24/7 Bitcoin-Monitoring Service

Cardiff-based cryptocurrency insurance startup Coincover has launched an insurance policy covering theft and loss.  Local news outlet Whales247 reported on Sept. 24 that this is “the first and only service to guarantee digital funds held online will not be lost or stolen.”  Coincover’s service reportedly monitors the wallet at all times and issues warnings in case of suspected theft, recovers funds in case of private key loss, manages key backups, provides cash replacement value in case of theft, and checks for any suspicious activity. Making crypto less risky Furthermore, the…

Facebook Buys Chatbot Startup Servicefriend to Integrate Into Calibra

Facebook has acquired the artificial intelligence-based chat-bot startup Servicefriend for customer service for Calibra, the digital wallet for Facebook’s planned Libra cryptocurrency. AI chatbots for Calibra’s customer service A Sept. 19 article by Israeli business newspaper the Marker reported that Facebook has acquired startup Servicefriends in order to build a messaging bot for customer service for Calibra. Announcing Libra and Calibra, Facebook said that it wanted to reach unbanked consumers and give them access to financial services and to make Calibra available through a specially created app and via its…

Tech Startup Nebula Genomics Launches Blockchain-Based DNA Sequencing

Tech startup Nebula Genomics is launching DNA sequencing using blockchain, which eliminates the need for customers to reveal personal information. Per a blog post published on Sept. 19, Nebula has rolled out anonymous genetic testing, enabling clients to purchase whole-genome sequencing and provide their saliva samples without the need to share their personal data such as name, address or credit card number. Eliminating the dependence on data de-identification To achieve this, Nebula developed and implemented a blockchain-based product that enables transparent and controllable data sharing, and offers an option to…

Two Arrested for ‘Old-Fashioned Shakedown’ of Cryptocurrency Startup

Authorities in the United States have arrested two individuals who allegedly threatened to destroy a startup crypto company if they were not paid millions of dollars in cryptocurrency. Extortion of crypto startup On Sept. 18, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of New York, together with the FBI, announced the arrest of Steven Nerayoff and Michael Hlady. Both individuals were charged with extortion of a cryptocurrency startup and have already made their initial appearance in federal court. Nerayoff, a lawyer himself, was purportedly hired to assist in a…

Israeli Startup That Allows Offline Crypto Transactions Secures $4M

Israeli cybersecurity startup GK8 has reportedly developed the world’s first offline system for transacting cryptocurrencies. The new system uses GK8’s proprietary cryptographic techniques that enable instant blockchain transactions of digital assets without any need for an internet connection, Israeli business news publication Globes reported on Sept. 18. The company raised $4 million in a funding round led by Discount Capital, a venture arm of one of Israel’s three largest banks, Discount Bank, and Marius Nacht, a co-founder of cybersecurity giant Checkpoint. Other investors reportedly included EdenBlock, iAngels, IDEAL-HLS, StratX and the…

Los Angeles Mayor’s Office Hosts Blockchain Startup Competition

The Los Angeles Mayor’s Office of Budget & Innovation and the city’s Information Technology Agency (ITALA) have partnered with Goren Holm Ventures (GHV) to host a blockchain startup contest called Block Tank. According to a Goren Holm Ventures press release published on Sept. 16, the event will take place in front of a panel of celebrity judges at investment-focused blockchain conference CIS. Investing in local innovation Winners will receive a $25,000 minimum investment offer from GHV and a $25,000 pilot project with the city. Ted Ross, the City of Los…

ETH Privacy Startup Aztec ‘Ignites’ Its SNARKs Generation Ceremony

Ethereum (ETH) privacy startup Aztec announced the launch of its zero-knowledge succinct non-Interactive argument of knowledge (SNARKs) generation via a cryptographic ceremony called Ignition. In a press release shared with Cointelegraph on Sept. 15 the startup also announced the closing of its latest round of investment with participation from A.Capital, Coinbase and Libertus Capital. A cryptographic ceremony Per the release, the multi-party computation ceremony is meant “to generate a set of encrypted points which will be used to derive all future Aztec notes.” The process will build an open source…

Founder of Payments Network Zelle Joins Stellar-Focused Startup as CEO

Stellar-focused (XLM) crypto development company Interstellar appointed the founder of digital payments network Zelle Mike Kennedy as its new CEO. On Sept. 12, the company announced the appointment in a Medium blog post. Stellar as an international payments system Kennedy’s network Zelle is the payment system used by JPMorgan Chase, Citi, Bank of America and many other financial institutions, according to its website. It is also claimed that Zelle manages over $50 billion in transaction volumes from over 25 million users. Now, Interstellar expects Kennedy and his team to build…

Startup Particl Reveals Marketplaces Creation and Management Feature

Privacy-focused blockchain software project Particl has announced a market management option that allows vendors to create and manage stores for specific audiences. Particl revealed the development in a press release shared with Cointelegraph on Sept. 12. With the new feature for its Open Marketplace product, Particl will enable vendors to set up an unlimited number of marketplaces within the ecosystem and share them with a specific group of customers. Such marketplaces will be available to only those users who have a market’s Market ID. Creation of personalized stores As such,…

Chinese Police Reportedly Close Office of ICO Startup

The offices of Chinese initial coin offering (ICO) startup GXChain have reportedly been closed by the local police. On Sept. 11, Dovey Wan — founding partner of blockchain-based investment company Primitive Ventures — tweeted a photo of an office taped closed (presumably by Chinese police) and announced that GXChain “got clamped down by the Chinese police.” She also said that she believes the project to be notable and legitimate: “GXChain was a very hot ICO back in the days with ATH market cap over $600M (even now still holds $48M)…